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Br J Urol. 1990 Apr;65(4):395-402.

Erection and ejaculation in man. Assessment of the electromyographic activity of the bulbocavernosus and ischiocavernosus muscles.

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Institute of Medical Physiology B, Panum Institute, Copenhagen, Denmark.


Electromyographic (EMG) recordings were obtained by concentric needle electrodes from the bulbocavernosus (BC) and ischiocavernosus (IC) muscles in 7 human volunteers during excitement to erection and subsequent ejaculation. Simultaneous registration of the time course and volume of each expressed spurt of semen was obtained using an aluminium pan suspended in front of the subject's penis on a force transducer the output of which was charted with the EMG activity. The BC and IC muscles showed no EMG activity during erection and detumescence cycles induced by visual sex stimulation. In 5 of 7 subjects, the first EMG burst of the BC in ejaculations induced by masturbation was not correlated with an expelled spurt of semen as were subsequent bursts. However, only 26 to 60% of the total number of EMG bursts were accompanied by expulsion of a spurt of semen. There thus appears to be a large safety factor in the striated muscle expulsive mechanism. Oral phenoxybenzamine treatment in 2 subjects did not significantly affect either the number of EMG bursts of the BC or the subjective pleasure of the orgasm but did significantly reduce the volume of semen expelled. Semen volume does not appear to be a unique determinant of the pleasure felt or the trigger for ejaculation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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